For many years, Victoria has been a breeding ground for high performance water polo players with many athletes representing Australia in junior, youth and senior teams.

However, in recent years there has been no team from Victoria participating in the premier national competition, the Australian Water Polo League (AWL).

During 2020-21, the Water Polo Victoria High Performance Advisory Panel (WPV HPAP) developed a plan to re-launch a Victorian-based men’s and women’s team in the Australian Water Polo League.

In September 2021, the Panel passed the operational responsibility to a small group of professionals to manage the formation of the Club. This group received a Provisional License for the new Victorian club to join the AWL in 2022.

The Victorian Phoenix Water Polo Club has been established as Victoria’s community-based club to be represented in the national league. The club provides the vehicle for players, coaches and referees to participate in the AWL, commencing competition in January 2022.

National League History prior to AWL

The inaugural Men’s National Water Polo League (NWPL) kicked off in Sydney in April 1990

9 teams competed in the new competition with each team encouraged to offset their expenses through individual sponsorship agreements

Inaugural teams were:

Cronulla Sharks, Canberra Hawks, Hobart Institute of Sport (TIS), Melbourne Barbarians, Sydney University Students, Tugun “Victa” Brisbane, Victorian “ICI” Tigers, WAIS Perth Torpedoes and West Sydney

Victorian Tigers were dominant in the early years of the National League winning 4 consecutive titles

Over the years, teams came and went across Australian States and Australian Capital Territory with international teams from New Zealand, Canada, Korea, Singapore joining the competition in the late 90’s and early 2000’s

It wasn’t until 2004 that a National Women’s Water Polo League was formed with 13 team kick-starting the competition

Inaugural teams were:

Adelaide Jets, Balmain Tigers, Brisbane Barracudas, Canberra Dolphins, Cronulla Sharks, Fremantle Marlins, Perth Comets, Queensland Breakers, Southern Stingers, St George Dragons, Sydney Uni Lions, UNSW Killer Whales, and Victorian Tigers

Sadly Victorian has been unable to field neither a Men’s nor Women’s team in 2017, 2018, 2019 leaving no pathway open for aspiring Victorian athletes

And then Covid-19 struck severely impacted the National League competition in 2020, 2021

But 2022 will see Victoria return to the National competition fielding both Men’s and Women’s teams

Vic Teams – Season Final Standings

YearMen Women 
2021No Victorian team ** No Victorian team ** 
2020No Victorian team * No Victorian team * 
2019No Victorian team No Victorian team 
2018No Victorian team No Victorian team 
2017No Victorian team No Victorian team 
2016Victorian SealsSilverVictorian Seals5th
2015Victorian Seals5thVictorian Seals7th
2014Victorian SealsSilverVictorian Seals6th
2013Victoria TigersGoldVictorian Tigers5th
2012Victorian TigersSilverVictorian Tigers4th
2011Victorian TigersSilverVictorian TigersBronze
2010Victoria TigersGoldVictorian Tigers6th
2009Victorian Tigers5thVictorian Tigers4th
2008Victorian TigersSilverVictorian Tigers6th
2007Victorian Tigers5thVictorian Tigers9th
2006Victorian TigersBronzeVictorian Tigers6th
2005Victorian Tigers9thVictorian Tigers8th
2004Victorian Tigers7thVictorian Tigers9th
2003Victorian Tigers7th  
2002Victorian Tigers7th  
2001Victorian TigersBronze  
2000Victorian Tigers5th  
1999Hawthorn Tigers5th?  
1998Hawthorn Tigers4th  
1997Victorian Tigers7th  
1996Richmond Tigers6th  
1995Richmond TigersBronze  
1994Richmond Tigers4th  
1993Richmond TigersGold  
1992VIS TigersGold  
 VIS Barbarians9th  
1991Richmond TigersGold  
 Melbourne Barbarians5th  
1990Richmond TigersGold  
 Melbourne Barbarians4th  
*           Season incomplete due to Covid-19 border restrictions
**          Season cancelled due to Covid-19 border restrictions